Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercise

Dr. Andrew Siegel, a urologist in Hackensack, New Jersey, discusses pelvic floor muscle exercises.

Part 1 of 2.

Part 2 of 2.

A Kegel exercise, named after Dr. Arnold Kegel, consists of contracting and relaxing the muscles that form part of the pelvic floor (which are now sometimes colloquially referred to as the “Kegel muscles”).

Explanation

The aim of Kegel exercises is to improve muscle tone by strengthening the pubococcygeus muscles of the pelvic floor. Kegel is a popular prescribed exercise for pregnant women to prepare the pelvic floor for physiological stresses of the later stages of pregnancy and vaginal childbirth. Kegel exercises are said to be good for treating vaginal prolapse and preventing uterine prolapse in women and for treating prostate pain and swelling resulting from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostatitis in men. Kegel exercises may be beneficial in treating urinary incontinence in both men and women.Kegel exercises may also increase sexual gratification and aid in reducing premature ejaculation.

Benefits for women

Factors such as pregnancy, childbirth, aging, being overweight, and abdominal surgery such as cesarean section, often result in the weakening of the pelvic muscles. This can be assessed by either digital examination of vaginal pressure or using a Kegel perineometer. Kegel exercises are useful in regaining pelvic floor muscle strength in such cases.

Urinary incontinence

The consequences of weakened pelvic floor muscles may include urinary or bowel incontinence, which may be helped by therapeutic strengthening of these muscles. A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials by the Cochrane Collaboration concluded that “PFMT [Pelvic floor muscle training] be included in first-line conservative management programs for women with stress, urge, or mixed, urinary incontinence…The treatment effect might be greater in middle aged women (in their 40’s and 50’s) with stress urinary incontinence alone…”.

Pelvic prolapse

The exercises are also often used to help prevent prolapse of pelvic organs. A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials by the Cochrane Collaboration concluded that “there is some encouragement from a feasibility study that pelvic floor muscle training, delivered by a physiotherapist to symptomatic women in an outpatient setting, may reduce severity of prolapse”.

Benefits for men

Though most commonly used by women, men can also use Kegel exercises. Kegel exercises are employed to strengthen the pubococcygeal muscle and other muscles of the pelvic diaphragm. Kegels can help men achieve stronger erections and gain greater control over ejaculation. The objective of this may be similar to that of the exercise in women with weakened pelvic floor: to increase bladder and bowel control and sexual function.

Incontinence

Regarding postprostatectomy urinary incontinence, a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials by the Cochrane Collaboration found “conflicting information about the benefit of pelvic floor muscle training for either prevention or treatment of urine leakage”.

Sexual function

Kegel workouts can provide men with stronger erections. Research published in 2005 issue of BJU International, have shown that pelvic floor exercises could help restore erectile function in men with erectile dysfunction. There are said to be significant benefits for the problem of premature ejaculation from having more muscular control of the pelvis. It is also possible that strengthening the pelvic floor may allow some men to achieve a form of orgasm without allowing ejaculation, and thereby perhaps reach multiple “climaxes” during sexual activity. In men, this exercise lifts up the testicles, also strengthening the cremaster muscle, as well as the anal sphincter muscles, as the anus is the main area contracted when a Kegel is done. This is because the pubococcygeus muscle begins around the anus and runs up to the urinary sphincter.

If you want to know more about kegel exercises, the step by step to do it you may want to go to step by step how to do kegel exercises!

For more information you might want to visit the reference link below.

Reference:

  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kegel_exercise
  2. http://www.premature-ejaculation-tips.com/2011/02/kegel-exercises-for-men-anatomy-of-the-pelvic-muscles/

About yuan ade sukma, MD

I'm an Indonesian doctor. I Believe that science and knowledge do not belong to anyone in the world. Science and knowledge is meant to be shared to make the world a better place to live. But if you find any material posted here is violating any copyrights, feel free to contact me and I will delete that. I believe that someday my blog can change the world. I BELIEVE in the POWER of WORDS! Do you..?
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16 Responses to Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercise

  1. Thank you for a great post.

  2. Pingback: Pelvic Floor Muscle Exercise » Pelvic Floor Dysfunction Treatment

  3. Kate says:

    Found a great product to help do the exercises, the Kegelcsior. http://www.kegelcisor.com

  4. The success rates are absolute for kegels. Thank you for the information posted here. I find it more interesting due to the benefit in men’s side also. I can only say to them, ‘Do not loose confidence you can do that’ . Thanks again

  5. logo rolex says:

    It is very helpful!

  6. tag heuer says:

    Really good post!

  7. Laura Rad says:

    Thanks for writing about the pelvic floor muscles. It was wonderful that you covered benefits for men! I am a sex educator and I frequently find that men don’t realize Kegel muscles can be helpful as they associate these exercises with childbirth. I would like to add that females experience many similar sexual and orgasmic benefits from Kegel exercises as were mentioned for men. Women often experience more control over orgasm, more powerful or frequent orgasms after strengthening their pelvic floor muscles. Continence is important to us lady folk, but so is pleasure! Again, thanks for the article.

  8. sandy says:

    I cant get where the pc muscles are

  9. Jill says:

    Excellent write-up. I absolutely appreciate this
    site. Continue the good work!

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